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"Compare and Contrast"
Compare and Contrast
Author:
Margaret Rowden
Nobody believes more fervently in the American Dream than Willy, yet the dream has somehow eluded him. Now he is sixty years old, a beaten and discouraged traveling salesman, with nothing to show for a lifetime of hard work but a small house on a crowded street where grass doesn't grow anymore and apartment houses block his view.

Rustling about upstairs are Willy's grown sons, Happy and Biff, home for a visit. Their presence in the house causes Willy to reminisce on happier times; times when their growing strength and athletic feats - especially Biff's - were a source of pride and joy to him; times when it seemed certain that his kids would go out and conquer the world. In this heightened and reflective state ' Willy speaks aloud to his boys as if the two youngsters he fondly remembers from the past had materialized in the room.

WILLY: That's just what I mean. Bernard [the son of Willy's friend] can get the best marks in school, y'understand, but when he gets out in the business world, y'understand, you are going to be five times ahead of him. That's why I thank Almighty God you're both built like Adonises. Because the man who makes an appearance in the business world, the man who creates personal interest, is the man who gets ahead. Be liked and you will never want.

Willy's philosophy is sound and fool-proof, he feels, but, unaccountably, it hasn't worked for him, nor for his favorite son, Biff. Ever since graduation from high school when he inexplicably ignored a prestigious scholarship offer to play football for the University of Virginia, Biff had acted like a restless vagabond, moving from one place and one job to another, unable to get a hold on life. He had also had a run-in with...

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essay on Compare and Contrast
Pages:
9 (2276 words)
Comments:
1
Added:
09/12/2011
Category:
Literature / English
Plagiarism level of this essay is: 88%
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01/19/2010
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